Here’s another article that bothered me today (=yesterday)… Desperately seeking Kraftwerk at the Guardian. The band doesn’t want to be disturbed; they only want to make music on their own terms if they make it at all. If they have to talk, they only want to talk about the current music and not go into discussions of the past. But the reporter wouldn’t take no for an answer; she went all the way to Dusseldorf and tried to track them down. Failed, but I guess she didn’t try hard enough. Still, what exactly was she looking for? I know she’s a journalist trying to make a living the same as everyone else, but I don’t understand the point of trying to hammer them down for an interview they clearly didn’t want to do. It reminds me of poor Syd Barrett trying to lead a private life but constantly being pestered by well-meaning fans and less-well-meaning photographers. Just doesn’t seem fair, but then nothing’s really fair, we all know that.
I think one of the biggest frustrations for me about making music (or not!) — and I guess this just as easily applies to everyone else who does anything — is that whatever you do, you can’t possibly do enough to satisfy either yourself or anyone else. If you make music or art, that’s not enough, you have to be an entertainer too. Which means you have to tour, otherwise people get mad at you for not playing in their town though you have played 50 miles away. If you accept that you’re also an entertainer, then you’ve accepted a completely different life than the one you set out to live in the first place. If you do one little thing, it might go forgotten, or you might have to live with the repercussions of that act for the rest of your life. And no matter how much you do, it’s never enough. I guess the more popular you are, the worse it gets. Madonna can’t give enough, Britney Spears can’t, nobody can because it’s impossible. The more you give, the more they want.
What did the author of the Kraftwerk article want to ask them? I can just hear it now… "How do you feel knowing your music has influenced a whole generation?" She’d rest her chin on her hands and smile at them expectantly. And they’d reply… "I don’t know… it was a fluke, we got lucky. We worked very hard, we made some music and apparently it got heard. It’s been a blessing and a curse." Would an answer like that have satisifed her? I don’t think so. We’re never satisfied, that’s the way life is. And as humans we can’t satisfy other humans either… you can’t be everywhere at the same time. You can’t help one person without neglecting another. If you say you’re really happy and satisfied with life as it is, you’re either lying or you’re crazy! John reminded me tonight of the first thing you learn when studying Zen Buddhism (not that either of us has studied anything very seriously!): life equals suffering. Get over it. Only then will you have any hope of finding happiness.
::sigh:: Too often I just get overwhelmed with life, no matter how you slice it. Not a day goes by that I don’t agonize over these little whys and wherefores. I wish I could just get over it and accept the whole pie as it is, the sweet and the sour too. But if I did that, and suddenly found myself truly happy, I’d be crazy, right? Gawd. I can just hear them now… "Shut up and play!!" And they’d be right.